Man accused of shooting, running over bald eagle in Smithfield

Police say a man shot a bald eagle before running over it several times.

ISLE OF WIGHT, Va. (WVEC) -- A man is facing a federal charge of violating the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act, after investigators said he shot and then ran over a bald eagle with an all-terrain vehicle, killing the animal.

According to an affidavit, 62-year-old Allen Thacker of Smithfield killed the eagle back in March.

One woman, who claims she witnessed Thacker running over the eagle, told 13News Now she saw him driving in circles, running it over "three or four" times and then dragging it into the woods.

The witness told Dana Lusher, who is the President of Nature's Nanny Wildlife Rehabilitation. Lusher reported it to the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries.

"The reason I got was that it was fishing in his pond. Fish are there for everybody. If he didn't want it fishing in his pond, he should put a net over it," said Lusher.

Carol Senechal with "Eagle On Alliance" was outraged when she heard about this.

"Ignorance of the law is no excuse. If a person doesn't want a bald eagle on his property, that's no excuse either," she said.

Thacker's attorney, Robert Rigney, told 13News Now he could not comment on the facts of the case but noted that it is a misdemeanor case and not a felony case.

According to federal laws protecting bald eagles, Thacker could face penalties of $5,000 or one year imprisonment if he is convicted.

Prosecutors are seeking the forfeiture of two guns and a Yamaha Big Bear ATV that belong to Thacker. His initial appearance in federal court is scheduled for May 26.

This case is not connected to another bald eagle killing that happened last week in Chesapeake.

Affidavit: Man accused of killing bald eagle in Smithfield by 13News Now on Scribd

 

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